More than 100,000 people signed a petition calling for Katie Rich to be fired
Katie Rich, a writer for the long-running sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live, has been indefinitely suspended from the show after tweeting an off-colour joke about Barron Trump, the 10-year-old son of the US president.
Rich, who writes for the Weekend Update satirical segment on the popular comedy programme, wrote in a now-deleted Tweet during Friday’s inauguration ceremony that “Barron will be this country’s first homeschool shooter.” The joke drew immediate criticism from all corners of the Internet, with more than 100,000 people signing an online petition to have her fired.
Reacting to the controversy, Rich deleted all the tweets from her account, pinning an apology to the top of her profile.
I sincerely apologize for the insensitive tweet. I deeply regret my actions & offensive words. It was inexcusable & I'm so sorry.— Katie Rich (@katiemaryrich) January 23, 2017
Saturday Night Live, produced by Lorne Michaels, has a long history of producing satirical comedy and has also been vocal in its numerous attacks on Donald Trump, both during his campaign run and after his election. Actor Alec Baldwin’s infamous impression of the new President has seen several sketches receive millions of views worldwide – including from Trump himself, who has blasted the show and called it unfunny during late-night tweeting binges.
But SNL also drew criticism for inviting Trump to guest host the show in November 2015, which drew the show’s biggest audience since 2012.
In light of the controversy, Chelsea Clinton, who grew up in the public eye when she moved with her parents into the White House in January 1993, when her father became the President, posted to Twitter about Barron Trump, writing he “deserves the chance every child does – to be a kid.”
Barron Trump deserves the chance every child does-to be a kid. Standing up for every kid also means opposing @POTUS policies that hurt kids.— Chelsea Clinton (@ChelseaClinton) January 22, 2017